Generation Z does not like wearing condoms. Now referred to as the “risk-taking generation,” a recent study found that 62% of 18-24 year-olds admitted they have had unprotected sex.

A new global study (that included the U.S.), revealed that nearly a quarter (22.6%) would be embarrassed to be caught carrying a condom while on a date. Durex condoms conducted a similar study earlier this year (the “Durex Global Sex Study”) that found 16.7% of Gen Z’rs admitted:”if they discovered a friend was carrying a condom they would make fun of them”. Even worse, 24% consider carrying a condom all the time “uncool.” Those crazy kids! Since when did carry a condom become uncool?

Meanwhile, the CDC’s statistics have revealed that STD’s among people 15-24 are at an all-time high. So apparently, chlamydia is now cooler than condoms.

But the good news is that attitudes about just about everything can be changed to the positive. To mark World AIDS Day, December 1, Durex launched a new international campaign urging people to stand up to the negative perceptions and social pressures that could be undermining condom usage among 18–24-year-olds. They challenged them to share photos of themselves carrying a condom using the hashtag #CondomHero. Their idea is to end the silly sexual shame associated with people carrying condoms, and make it seem cool to be smart enough to use them.

According to their statistics, about 4,500 adults are newly infected with HIV every day – of which 37% are among young people (15-24). “For young American men in particular” they report, “peer pressure, pornography, social media and the lack of safe sex in TV and movies are likely to be key factors influencing attitudes and behavior towards condom use.” Even more alarming, “37.7% of men claimed that they would rather risk getting an STI than potentially miss out on sex if a partner didn’t want them to use protection.

In response to these alarming trends, Durex hopes people will stand-up against the negative views towards safe sex and the “condom trolls” who won’t use them.

Roberto Pescatori, Durex Brand Director for Europe and North America, said: “Durex is on a mission to help everyone have safe and pleasurable sex. This World AIDS Day with our #CondomHero campaign, we are empowering young people to challenge negative preconceptions about safe sex and be proud to be protected.”

Their worldwide movement encourages “safe, healthy and fun sex.”

To view the campaign film, created in partnership with UNILAD click